There is a lot to cover on Wednesdays. We should know, as collectively, we read an insane amount of comics. Even with a large review staff, it’s hard to get to everything. With that in mind, we’re back with Wrapping Wednesday, where we look at some of the books we missed in what was another great week of comics.
Let’s get this party started.
Written by Gerry Duggan and Brian Posehn
Illustrated by Mike Hawthorne
Reviewed by James Johnston
I’m not too sure how I feel about this whole All-New #1’s that aren’t really #1’s but we put one #1 in the cover so come buy it gimmick that Marvel’s taken a shining to lately. On one hand, it can be a great way to draw in on new readers. On the other hand, the “Deadpool” team can basically ignore any idea of even sort of starting over by giving us an issue that consists of a brawl months in the making, full of references to the honestly sort-of convoluted history Deadpool’s grown in these quarter of a hundred issues. And honestly? More power to them. Deadpool #25 continues Duggan and Posehn’s goal of transforming Deadpool from wandering meme-machine with a chalupa complex into the Marvel equivalent of a stand-up comedian on the edge of a nervous breakdown. It’s a place that Deadpool’s never really gone before and the fight with Crossbones here brings Wade to a place that will actually seem to make the next issue a good jumping on point. Speaking of said fight, Hawthorne delivers some brutal panels but there’s one joke that’s just not delivered as well it should be. That said, we still get Deadpool vs. The TSA which is as good a reason as any to jump onto, what I humbly consider, to be the best Deadpool series since the Joe Casey run.
Final Verdict: 7.8 – Browse with a suggested buy!
East of West #10
Written by Jonathan Hickman
Illustrated by Nick Dragotta
Reviewed by David Harper
I know it’s not very high-brow reviewer of me to define a comic with such a word, but if you could boil this issue down to one bit of slang, it’d probably be “badass.” The reason isn’t because of any false machismo or any such things, but for the same reasons why people like John Wayne were badass.
And that’s not a statement about cowboys, or the genre tie of “western” to East of West. This is all about the confidence. Is there anyone in this book that isn’t utterly dripping with confidence, which is permanently and effortlessly conveyed by Hickman and Dragotta? Faced with a towering god of the old west, panic never once set in – except for the Wolf, and that was mostly in a familial sense – because there is just an utter sense to the capability of the characters that permeates from the page.
Even the arguably B story in this issue, the evolution of the Anti-Christ (aka Death’s son), highlights that, and I love the subtleties that Dragotta infuses that character with to more convincingly tell us (and the three horsemen) that he’s just a programmed child, when he is really so much more.
This is the most confidently told comic on the stands, and it knows exactly what it is each and every month. What it is happens to be badass, and I am alright with that.
Final Verdict: 9.0 – one of the best comics around today
Fantastic Four #2
Written by James Robinson
Illustrated by Leonard Kirk
Reviewed by Brian Salvatore
The Fantastic Four, as a team, have been through just about everything and, therefore, it can be hard to make their adventures feel significant or unique anymore. The main problem with Matt Fraction’s run wasn’t that the stories weren’t good, it was simply that they didn’t stand out, especially when compared to Jonathan Hickman’s scientific yet emotional run. Two issues into the James Robinson/Leonard Kirk era, and it seems like the theme intended is one of unanswerable questions and, specifically, how we can live and thrive in a world of unknowables.Continued below
Kirk’s artwork is quite adept at showing the physical toll that superheroics are taking on the Richards/Storm/Grimm clan. Nothing looks easy here, and that is a really interesting and intelligent way to build this story. Sure, Reed is a genius, but he is far more compelling when we see him sweat. Robinson realizes this too, and has systematically been taking away the crutches of the team – Sue is missing Val, Reed doesn’t have the answers, Johnny – well, you need to read this issue to see what Johnny’s deal is – and Ben, as we know from last issue, will become as mean and harsh as his exterior suggests. They are shaking the team to its core, and in doing so, seem to be starting a pretty unique, while undoubtedly classic, run on this title.
Final Verdict: 8.8 – Buy
The Fox #5
Written by J.M. DeMatteis and Dean Haspiel
Illustrated by Dean Haspiel
Reviewed by Brian Salvatore
“The Fox” is a miniseries constructed in an unusual way. The first issue started the main story, the second launched a backup, the fourth concluded the main story, and the fifth joined the main and backup into one big finale. Because of that, the issue was scripted by J.M. DeMatteis, writer of the backup, instead of Mark Waid, who had scripted the first four issues. Waid’s dialogue felt a little less forced and a little more humorous than what is found here, but the issue still works as a nice conclusion to the “Freak Magnet” miniseries.
The star of the book, however, is undoubtedly Dean Haspiel. Haspiel’s art in this issue reaches its most insane, and most expansive, with action and ridiculousness rubbing shoulder to shoulder on each and every page. And yet, his semi-autobiographical comix background peaked out through the framing device of the “modern day.” Overall, this issue wraps the mini up nicely, and ramps up the excitement for the upcoming “Fox Hunt” mini.
Final Verdict: 8.2 – Buy